The Canadian 4-H Foundation was established in 1969 to ensure the legacy of 4-H Canada and continue to provide national programs and events that help members Learn To Do By Doing.

A federally incorporated, not-for profit organization, the Canadian 4-H Foundation is made up of experienced and knowledgeable individuals responsible for overseeing and managing 4-H Canada's endowment funds in a reliable, ethical, and intelligent manner.

Meet the Trustees

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Ben Graham

CHAIR, ALBERTA

Ben Graham is a country boy at heart. He comes by it honestly — his family has farmed the same land for over a century. Ben is passionate about agriculture and especially 4-H. As a second generation 4-H’er he was a member of the Vulcan West 4-H Beef club and transitioned to the Champion 4-H Beef club for 10 years. During that time he attended numerous regional, national and international 4-H events and conferences. Ben was named to the Alberta Premier’s Award group where he travelled the province as an ambassador for 4-H. Today, Ben is proud to be Chair of the Canadian 4-H Foundation Board and is currently President of AdFarm – Canada’s largest agriculturally focused communications agency.

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Gene Fraser

VICE-CHAIR, MANITOBA

Gene Fraser is a graduate of St. Francis Xavier University with a Bachelor of Business Administration. Raised on a family farm in Antigonish County, Nova Scotia, he moved to Winnipeg and dedicated over forty years to MacDon Industries Ltd., holding roles from Operations to Vice President of Business Development. Active in agricultural associations and youth programs like 4-H, he is passionate about mentoring future leaders. Gene and his wife Sheri enjoy traveling, music, and plan to visit all 32 NHL arenas! Additionally, their goal and passion is to give back to their community, province and country in someway to make it a better place tomorrow.

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Valerie Stone Grech

DIRECTOR, ONTARIO

Valerie was a proud 4-H member in Brant County, Ontario, even serving on the Youth Advisory Committee, as a 4-H representative at the Food and Agriculture Organization's 41st Conference on Agriculture and, ultimately, as a 4-H facilitator, leading the 4-H Dairy Club in her hometown. In addition to her bachelor's degree, Valerie holds a diploma from the Advanced Agricultural Leadership Program and has over ten years' experience in the agricultural field. In her spare time, she enjoys fastball, figure skating, volunteering and playing with her two dogs!

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Jacob Fergus

TRUSTEE, NEW BRUNSWICK

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Ryan Riese

TRUSTEE, ALBERTA

Growing up on a farm in Manitoba, Ryan’s passion for agriculture started early, and he believes farm living is the best education you can get! He has used his MBA and CPA to dedicate much of his career to the industry, and is currently the National Director, Agriculture with RBC, a position he has held since 2018. Outside of work, you can find him chasing after his young son who is crawling and ripping every cord out of the wall!

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Arron Madson

TRUSTEE, ALBERTA

A 4-H alum from the Sundre Beef Club in Alberta, Arron has spent much of his career in the agriculture industry. With a decade of working for 4-H Alberta and a decade of experience with various advertising agencies, Arron is currently the President of Agcall, a company he has worked at for the past 19 years. Arron has visited every Canadian province apart from the Yukon & Territories, and enjoys riding, golf, volunteering, and spending time with his wonderful wife, three kids, and granddaughter.

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Nicole McAuley

TRUSTEE, ONTARIO

Nicole brings with her 15 years of experience in the communications field leading numerous teams of expert professionals to deliver excellence in internal and external communications, government relations, and public affairs to support and strengthen organizations' images and brands. Nicole has worked with corporations including BASF, Canadian Centre for Food Integrity, Hatch, and Vale. Nicole looks forward to bringing her expertise to the Canadian 4-H Foundation as a trustee.

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Ashwin Ramesh

TRUSTEE, ONTARIO

As part of McDonald’s Canada Impact Leadership, Ashwin Ramesh leads the Sustainability & Impact Strategy team that is charged with designing, managing strategies and partnerships to drive positive impact and purposeful resilient growth for the McDonald’s brand in Canada. His oversight includes strategies and cross functional programs relating to food and planet impacts – climate action, nature-based solutions, restaurant sustainability, packaging, circularity, and agriculture. Prior to McDonald’s, Ashwin started his career at Procter & Gamble as a plant operation engineering manager for brands like Bounce & Swiffer later switching to lead brand management & commercial strategy for brands like Tide & Gain detergents in Canada. He is looking forward to contributing to the Canadian 4-H Foundation as a trustee.